What is Zend Certification?
The Zend Certified PHP Engineer is offered by the Zend company. It covers a wide range of development applications in PHP 5.5. Among the topics covered in the program include PHP Basics, Object Oriented Programming, and Security or Arrays. You can a preparatory course for the exam but it is not mandatory. You can take the exams from one of several Pearson VUE Testing Centers from across the globe.
Why Become Zend Certified?
There are several benefits of becoming a Zend certified PHP developer. Here are some of them:
It can confirm your skills
For advanced PHP programmers, being Zend certified is one of the ways you can boost your professional experience. Once you pass the Zend certification exam, your name will be included in the list of other passers. Aside from that, being Zend certified can help you distinguish yourself from beginners.
It helps expand your knowledge
The Zend certification program requires some preparation and studying on your part. As it covers all the basic functions of PHP, reviewing for the exam may also be a good way of learning different aspects of PHP and reviewing your knowledge.
When you are applying for Zend certification, you will cover a lot of ground from the basic knowledge such as syntax, operators, or language constructs to the other features of PHP such as working with files, manipulating arrays and strings, and others. As a result, you may also gain a wider view of PHP itself.
What are the disadvantages of Zend certification?
The manner of construction
The exam consists of around 70 questions. The Zend website provides some questions to give you a perspective of how they are really built. Some of the questions will only ask you What will the following code produce? Likewise, there are some sample codes that you need to examine.
The sample questions can be a good gauge in checking your PHP skills since you will be exposed to real codes and be made to analyze the various commands being executed.
However, some of the other parts of the test that do not make real sense at all. For instance, there is no point in memorizing hundreds of string array or functions when you can find properly written ones from the PHP documentation. These functions have proven inconsistent in their naming and parameter order or return values.
It does not prove your competence as a developer
Yes, being Zend certified does improve your skills and experience. But that’s just about it. Your Zend certificate is not a sufficient proof of your competency and efficiency as a PHP developer. The truth of the matter is that even if you do not take the exam, you can still use your knowledge in real cases. On the aspect of being able to create programs or following best practices, your certificate may prove meaningless.
People hire dedicated PHP developers not because they are Zend certified but because they are able to accomplish projects. But I am not discouraging you from taking the Zend certification program, what I am saying is that you can still prove your competence without it.